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5 Ways To Turn If Your College Major Does Not Match Your Passion

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(Editor’s Note: The following article is a guest post by superstar entrepreneur and tech investor Jonathan Schultz.)

Having a degree matters…but maybe not the specific degree you have. Why? Well, according to recent research by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, 62% of recent college graduates are working in jobs that require a degree, but only 27% of college graduates are working in a job that even relates to their major. Here are tips on how to pivot if your college major doesn’t match your motivation or passion.

1. REMEMBER, YOUR FIRST JOB MAY NOT ALIGN WITH YOUR MAJOR

Jobs in today’s world do not always fit what your college major may be. This is why it is important to have a minor that may not be something you love but is something that can come in handy in the workforce. Perhaps you could minor in computer engineering or coding even if you major in fashion media. You would be surprised at how these two separate studies could cross paths.

2. YOUR EXPERIENCE IS WHAT REALLY MATTERS

Take advantage of opportunities to intern in various different companies and in different types of jobs. Get involved on campus and volunteer for things you care about. Those items may get you excited about something that you otherwise didn’t study in school, which could bring you into a whole new direction.

3. FOCUS ON SOFT SKILLS

Employers want to see that you can learn fast, fit into the environment and be responsive to each task that is assigned. Ninety-three percent of employers believe that critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills are more vital than someone’s undergraduate field of study. Even Silicon Valley is starting to favor employees who studied liberal arts as those opposed to the typical technology path. Soft skills are a huge deal to employers. It’s great to create a product —but if you can’t get someone else to believe in it, then it will end up as just a great idea.

4. YOUR NETWORK IS PARAMOUNT

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You know what they say… “it isn’t about what you know, but WHO you know.” You can choose a business major with the target of becoming a CEO one day, but the truth of the matter is that if you don’t create a network, you’re limiting the speed of getting where you want to go. You can start building your network now by building relationships with your professors and peers and attending as many networking events as possible.

The major you choose is not the only path your career will take you on. You may end up with all A’s in finance but end up becoming a graphic designer. The choice is yours and it will be the right one as long as you are excited and find what motivates you to wake up every day and push forward.

Jonathan Schultz is an entrepreneur, real estate tech investor and influencer. He’s the co-founder of Onyx Equities, a leading private equity real estate firm, and has been voted one of the most powerful people in real estate. Follow Jon’s blog here

Wealth Hacks

7 Incredibly Effective Tips To Get Fit In The Office

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Not only do we spend most of our day within the confinement of our workspace, but we also spend most of our life there. Our schedules are basically built around our work life.

Before we can decide to go out for the night or take a vacation, we check our work schedule.

The influence of our work life has a ton of impact on how we live. If you love your job, you’re about to love it even more. And if you don’t—and let’s face it, a lot of us don’t—you just might have a reason to now.

By incorporating the tips in this article, you’ll have something to look forward to each day. Here are seven effective tips to get fit in the office. 

1. Get an accountability partner

You may not feel like doing the things you know you should be doing to achieve the goals you have set for yourself. Don’t wait for the feeling of “I don’t feel like it” to go away. The truth is, that feeling may last for a few days or even weeks.

Get yourself a reliable accountability partner. An accountability partner can make a night and day difference in your ability to get started with your journey and remain consistent. 

Structure is imperative in order to see what you need to focus on. Create a plan, follow it, review your progress or lack thereof, and refine your plan to meet your needs.

2. Talk to a friend/co-worker who has similar goals as yourself

If your prospective accountability partner has already begun their journey, this is even better but it’s not necessary. 

Take a few minutes during your break and share your health and fitness goals with each other, set specific dates and times when you meet up (even in the office) and perform basic exercises, stretches, and eat healthy lunches/snacks. 

Encourage each other to continue these efforts on the weekends or holidays. Set milestones such as meeting with each other three times per week or walking up three flights of steps.

3. Focus on accumulative exercise

Being in the gym for two hours every day is not necessary in order to achieve exceptional levels of fitness and health. 

Many do not realize the extreme consequences of inactivity and that may be why the need to exercise is not made a priority. 

A study by the University of Cambridge states that walking 20 minutes daily can reduce the chance of early death. Deaths related to lack of physical fitness were found to be the case in over 300,000 European men and women. That’s twice the amount of deaths caused by obesity. We can conclude that small consistent actions result in big long term results.

4. Move a little

Is being inactive really a big deal? More often than not, we wait until a doctor informs us of our need to change our habits in order to reverse the onset of chronic diseases. 

Inactivity increases the risk of coronary artery disease, non-insulin-dependent diabetes, osteoporosis, malignancies (of the colon, prostate, testicle, female reproductive tract, breast) and even the alteration of your mental state, such as anxiety and depression. 

You’re likely familiar with one or two diseases mentioned above. These diseases can cause the quality of life to deteriorate. The solution needed in order to prevent these possibly fatal diseases is to begin regular exercise. 

5. Get started. Start by exercising for at least 30 minutes per day

Accumulative exercise is a solid strategy if you don’t have large time blocks to perform exercise. Do smaller bouts of frequent exercise throughout the day. 

Having a structure to follow makes this task easier. An example of accumulative exercise would be performing 15 bodyweight squats three or four times a day, four to five times per week.

6. Stand instead of sitting

The amount of time spent sitting while at work is doing far more damage to our health than we realize. If you have the ability to stand while at work, you should certainly be taking advantage of this. 

A study published in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health stated their findings from the difference in caloric expenditure in sitting versus standing desks. 

These were the results. “Results indicate a significant increase in caloric expenditure in subjects that were standing at a standing classroom desk compared with sitting at a standard classroom desk.” Prolonged sitting contributes to the manifestation of chronic diseases, numerous studies support this statement. 

Even if you do not have access to a standing desk, you should work in intervals. Set a timer or use an app like ‘BeFocused’ to remind yourself when to stand up. All you need is a minute or two in order to get the blood flowing and muscles loosened.

7. Participate in a Wellness Program

Out of all the listed tips, this one takes the cake and yes you can eat it too. Nearly 90% of workplaces with 50 employees or more deploy some sort of health awareness program. 

The focus of these programs is to create awareness surrounding health issues, minimize health risks, improve activity, etc. The main objective of these programs is usually to improve company culture, reduce health care costs, and improve employee morale. 

If you’re an employee, ask your employer if they have an existing wellness program and find out how you can participate. If you’re an employer, I encourage you to seek ways to incorporate a wellness program into your organization. Organizations like Business Body Elite provide free resources to help you implement a wellness program.

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Wealth Hacks

Net Operating Income (NOI), Explained

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Goes without saying, if you’re a new landlord, there are some metrics you just have to know. And if this is the most important metric to master, this one may be the most important, period…

(Pause for dramatic effect…)

The NOI.

Whether it’s vetting, buying or managing real estate, NOI—short for Net Operating Income—is arguably the most crucial metric for real estate investors.

NOI is simply your net profits from rental income, after your expenses are paid. Here’s why it matters and why it’s more important than you think.

Your bottom line

When you have a rental property, your end game is to make a profit. You get your rental income. Deduct your operating expenses like maintenance, repairs and so on. Now you have your net operating income, which is your bottom line.

The formula

Net operating income is real estate’s equivalent to corporate finance’s EBIT. Here’s how it looks:

NOI = all revenue from the property – all operating expenses

It’s a simple enough formula, but there are ways you can manage it.

Managing OPEX

In business, there are two ways to increase profits. 1) Increase revenue. 2) Decrease expenses.

Simple enough, right? With rental income, there’s only so much you can do to increase revenue. So managing your OPEX is a basic but extremely important metric to monitor — and very often the hack for value-add investors to unlock crazy profits.

Valuation

Here’s the real beauty of NOI. Unlike single-family properties, the value of income-producing real estate (using the cap rate formula) is derived directly from the net income you can squeeze from it. Not supply and demand. Not the market. Not the S&P. Not bubbles. None of that.

“Net Worth Hacking”

In other words, if you manage your NOI, you can literally enhance your asset’s value. This is at the core of the value-add strategy. This New Jersey group bought a building for $57 million, hacked the NOI through upgrades and management, and BOOM! Sold it three years later for $101 M’s.

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Personal Finance

Shopping For Homes? 5 Low Down Payment Options You Need To Consider

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Home prices are hitting new highs so lots of folks are looking to snag an affordable home before it’s too late.

Here’s where a variety of low down payment options come in handy. But beware! They could come with a high price tag in terms of interests rates. Here are five you need to know.

(Here’s a comprehensive list by state.)

1. New American Funding

One of the features the lender offers is the flexibility for payment depending on the life of the mortgage. The buyer may also qualify for reduced rates, and down payments could go as low as 3%.

2. Chase

The Chase DreaMaker plan offers buyers the option to fund their entire down payment from any external sources – be it grants or gifts. It also provides low down payment – touching nearly 3%, and reduced insurance rates.

3. NACA

The Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America runs through each request to determine the rates and down payment amount. What’s more, they don’t change any additional fees and your credit score is not tied to your interest rate.

4. Flagstar

Their Professional Loan plan is targeted specifically at buyers who have the potential for income growth over time. They have the option to provide almost zero down payment if you have a credit score of over 720.

5. Bank of America

Their Affordable Loan Solution plan is mainly focused on first-time home-buyers and comes packed with down payment assistance across each state. [FORBES]

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